The Bishop of the Evangelical Christian Baptist Union in Belarus criticized the Orthodox Metropolitan Paul's statements.
Bishop of the Evangelical Christian Baptist Union in the Republic of Belarus Leanid Mikhovich condemned the statements of Orthodox Metropolitan of Minsk and Zaslauye, Patriarchal Exarch of All Belarus Pavel about the Baptists, in which he called them sectarians, compared them with gypsies and urged not to talk with them on religious topics.
“We consider such statements to other believers or persons of other nationalities unacceptable, especially from a person holding such a high position. The history and culture of Belarus teaches us tolerance and benevolence towards people of all nationalities and believers of different faiths, given that the right to freedom of religion is enshrined in the Law,” – he stated, the Evangelical Christian Baptist Union in Belarus reports.
Leanid Mikhovich expressed hope that the Metropolitan Pavel admits that he was wrong. “At the same time, we understand that it is impossible to achieve complete justice in this sinful world. Remembering the commandments of Christ, we will bless those who curse us, do good to those who hate us and pray for those who offend us (Matthew, chapter 4, verse 44). We will also pray for the truth to flow as a strong flow in our society (Book of the Prophet Amos, chapter 5, verse 24), so that the Gospel – the good news of God's love and salvation through faith in Jesus Christ – fills the earth,” – the bishop said.
He also thanked God for many sincerely believing Orthodox people, with whom they can discuss issues of faith and service to Christ. “Bless and wish prosperity to all the peoples inhabiting our beautiful country, including Gypsies, and especially Gypsies-Baptists, who are in our churches," – Leanid Mikhovich said.